Nigerian Army said yesterday that it lost one of its personnel last week while repelling an attack by bandits on Diskiru community in Dandume Local Government Area of Katsina State.

It, however, said five bandits were successfully neutralized while three women and their infants were rescued during the operation.

This was made known in a statement issued to newsmen by the Acting Director, Defence Media Operations, Brigadier-General Benard Onyeuko.

The latest feat came five days after bandits killed 16 people including a police officer in Dandume Local Government Area.

Onyeuko said the bandits in their hundreds, armed with sophisticated weapons, had descended on the community in a reprisal, after they had lost three of their members in an earlier attack.

The spokesman said the soldier, a member of Operation Sahel Sanity, lost his life while trying to rescue one of the kidnapped women.

On October 29, troops swiftly responded to a distress call about bandits’ activities at Diskuru village in Faskari Local Government Area of Katsina State.

“On arrival, the gallant troops engaged the criminals in a fierce fire fight forcing them to withdraw in disarray.

“Resulting from the encounter, three bandits were neutralized by the troops as several others were believed to have escaped with various degrees of gunshot wounds.

“During the exploitation phase, two additional bandits’ bodies were discovered along their withdrawal route.

“Also in the aftermath of the encounter, three women and their infants earlier kidnapped by the bandits were rescued.

“Regrettably, one brave soldier paid the supreme price in an attempt to save one of the rescued nursing mothers in the heat of the encounter,” Onyeuko said.